Watts RIOTS (1965) – The Beginning Of Black-Initiated Riots
On July 2, 1964, the Civil Rights Act was signed into law by President Johnson (creating Compulsory Inclusionism). It took just 16 days from that date for black males to launch an unprovoked and racially motivated attack on white police officers and white people’s businesses in Harlem, NY(1). There would be four more of these riots in 1964 (Rochester riot… Dixmoor, IL, riot… Paterson, NJ riot… Philadelphia riot). In 1965, from January to August 11, there is one riot: the Watts riot.
The total number of black-initiated riots from 1900 to July 2, 1964, is THREE (two in Harlem, one in Jacksonville, FL). From July 2, 1964 to August 11th , under the new Compulsory Inclusionism system , there are already FIVE.
From here on in this blog I’m going to deal only with the 1965 Watts riots, and try to give you a little insight into what provoked the black males’ behavior.
First, however, let’s address the obvious. There cannot be any acceptable excuse for what blacks did in Watts in 1965. PERIOD. For blacks to commit racist acts against white people, who had done them no wrong whatsoever, to loot and burn their businesses, to hurl a barrage of racial insults toward white police officers, who were simply doing their job, obviously, has nothing to do with the concept of “equality.” Further, Martin Luther King’s movement had been implying to white people over the previous four years that blacks were seeking racial acceptance and cooperation – a brotherhood of one. In the Watts riots, however, now white people are watching blacks attack white people and their stores … for no other reason than their race. Clearly, there is a tremendous inconsistency here. And no person of common sense should see it any other way.
The Watts riots began on August 11, 1965, and lasted 5 days. It was the longest and most community devastating racially motivated disturbance to date ever launched by blacks in American history; and the first to be watched on American television from coast to coast. The events that led to what’s become known as the Watts riots are described below.
A California Highway Patrolman had been informed by a black motorist that another black motorist appeared to be driving drunk. The Highway Patrol officer, Lee Minikus, who happened to be white, followed the suspect vehicle, clocking his speed well in excess of the posted speed limit. The patrolman then pulled over a 21-year-old black motorist, Marquette Frye – in Watts. In the passenger seat was Mr. Fry’s 22-year-old step-brother. By Mr. Frye’s own admission, the officer was courteous to him when asked to step out of his car for some questions. After a few questions, the officer proceeded to give the driver a sobriety test. After the sobriety test the officer determined the driver to be intoxicated and informed him he was under arrest. Mr. Fry’s 22-year-old step-brother, who was also intoxicated, wanted to drive the vehicle home, which happened to be just a few blocks away. However, the patrolmen refused him because of his obvious condition. The 22-year-old then leaped from the car and raced home to tell his mother to come and get the car. The mother and her son then hurried back to the scene where the patrolman was waiting for the tow truck to impound the vehicle (impounding a vehicle driven by an assumed drunk driver was standard procedure). The officer was also becoming alarmed at the growing number of blacks assembling at the scene, so he summoned back-up. The officer allowed the mother to speak to her son, the driver, before he put him in the squad car (Marquette Frye still had yet to be placed in handcuffs). The mother also believed her son was drunk and scolded him for driving in that condition. More squad cars – occupied by mostly white police officers – had continued to show up at the scene. The arresting officer now tried to escort Marquette Frye to a vehicle and place him under arrest (hand-cuff him). However, the visibly drunk Marquette Frye was being provoked to “run for it” by 200 or more black males and females who had now gathered at the scene (many shouting racial obscenities at the white officers – who were simply doing their job).
Apparently emboldened by the large number of his people and the constant prodding to run, the drunk Mr. Frye suddenly bolted for the crowd. Highway Patrol officer Lee Minikus, along with some other officers, grabbed Mr. Frye and then began to wrestle with him. During the scuffle, officer Minikus hit Marquette Frye in the head with his baton, causing him to become disoriented. When this happened, Mr. Frye’s mother then jumped on the back of another officer. The drunken Marquette Frye, along with his brother and mother, were arrested, handcuffed, then placed into waiting squad cars. During this altercation almost all of the blacks had become belligerent now, shouting insults as well as trying to incite other blacks to attack the white officers. A few white officers went into the crowd and grabbed a black female and black male who they believed were the loudest instigators and arrested them. The police quickly began to leave the scene. From beginning to end, the arrest of the drunken Marquette Frye and the four others had taken only about a half-hour. However, the hundreds of blacks who had watched the five arrests, and particularly the black youth, were now in a feral fury over the – deserved – treatment of the five (only Marquette Frye was hit) and began to hurl rocks and bottles at the remaining patrol cars as they were leaving the scene.
It was 7:45 pm. The riot had officially begun … and would last throughout the night and the next four days. 34 were killed (all black rioters), 1032 were injured and over 4000 were arrested. (source: Chronological History Of The Negro – pg.592)
Note: Mark Ridley Thomas, who is an LA County Supervisor and has a salary in 2010 of $178,789 , plus lots of perks, his geographic area includes Watts (note: The ave. black male’s salary in 2010 in Thomas’ district is about $26,000 a year. Blacks equal about 8% of LA county population i.e. Thomas’ salary is drawn entirely from the non-black tax base). Thomas gives these figures for the Watts riots:
“34 killed, 1,032 injured, including 90 Los Angeles police officers, 136 firemen, 10 national guardsmen, 23 persons from other governmental agencies, and 773 civilians), 118 of the injuries resulted from gunshot wounds, 3,438 adults arrested and property losses in excess of $40 million (in 1965 dollars, equivalent to $277 million today). ”
As I already pointed out, the Watts riots was the fifth racially motivated civil disturbance initiated by blacks within the new Compulsory Inclusionism system (and, again, there were just THREE black-initiated riots under the DMG Theorem). It was also the fifth time in 13 months blacks had looted and burned white-owned businesses and attacked white people in a predominantly black community — for no other reason than their race. And it was also the first nationally televised American riot. This must have been truly an ominous sign for the integrationists (black and white), since they were suggesting to the white population (pre 1964) that all the black man ever wanted was his “equal rights” (i.e. the “right” to integrate). This implied, of course, that white people should let their guard down and trust the black man; that he wouldn’t victimize some unsuspecting white male or female just because he had more of an opportunity to do it; and white people’s fear of this behavior was all based on bigoted notions of the black man being “too primitive”, “too untrustworthy” and “too ill-tempered” to be integrated into the “civilized” society of the white man. Well, those in the white community that feared the nature of the black man, this nature is now playing itself out on national television for everyone to see. The black man is attacking innocent white motorists, or any white person he can find on the street, and beating him (no white person was killed in the Watts riots). He is shouting in the streets of Watts, “Get Whitey!” He is attacking white business owners and looting their stores; and after he loots them, he is then burning their stores.
Of course, the thick irony here is that it was these white business owners who supplied stores for blacks to shop at and also created jobs for them (they were essentially the black man‘s provider in Watts). When this riot ends the tally of ransacked businesses is quickly determined, and it’s staggering: 288 looted and burned stores. Of the local white-owned business in Watts, none are capable of re-opening (these white-owned businesses never returned). The remaining white population in Watts … left within months.
The cold reality here is that blacks were attempting to drive out (or, if you prefer, bully) white people from Watts, which was one of only three Los Angeles’ predominately black communities in 1965 (Central Avenue, West Adams and Watts). The riots were also further adding to incidents in the last 13 months of blacks practicing racial hatred, the very thing they were condemning whites of doing over the last one hundred years. And though in Watts all blacks were not practicing racial hatred, still, there was more than enough black racially motivated violence – directed at completely innocent people – to ruin every white-owned business in Watts; and in so doing basically destroy the local economy (note: Watts’ economy NEVER recovered from this senseless black male-initiated riot i.e blacks never used their own resources, their own manpower or their own initiative … to rebuild what they had collectively determined to destroy).
Now we reach a critical stage here. What could be the cause(s) of this urban riot initiated by black males?
Let’s look at the following five reasons that were being cited as possible leading causes of the Watts riots: (1) Police Brutality ; (2) Overcrowding ; (3) High Unemployment ; (4) Poverty; (5) Bad Schools.
There is no evidence – again, NO EVIDENCE whatsoever – that I could find anywhere on the Internet, or any other source, demonstrating that blacks were being subjected to police brutality in Watts (and as you can clearly see in my 63 blogs on this site, I have done an extensive amount of research on the history of the black race). I can tell you, though, what has been reported and conclusively proven: black male crime stats. From a Time Magazine article in 1958:
“[City of] Los Angeles (13% Negro population). In 1957 [Negroes accounted for] … 48% of the arrests for homicide, rape, aggravated assault, robbery, burglary, larceny and auto theft.”
Another good case in point would be the infamous black male serial rapist of Watts named Eldridge Cleaver (residing in a California state penitentiary in 1965). By Cleaver’s own admission he started out raping black women in the 1950s and then turned his perverted attention to white females. In 1957, the Watts’ rapist was identified to police by a white female victim he had raped and then attempted to murder (she survived by playing dead). Never did this Watts rapist claim he was ill-treated by police – and no black male would have been more deserving of ill-treatment by white police officers than serial rapist Cleaver.
Finally, when Watts’ black community leaders met with members of the LAPD the following day of the first night of rioting , never was there any mention made about a history of police brutality, or disrespect, toward blacks by police (many documentaries here, and you can search for yourself) .
As for white police officers in particular disrespecting or brutalizing blacks in Watts, it is important to note that the Los Angeles Police Department, which has jurisdiction in Watts, had a standing policy in 1965 of using its black officers to patrol the three predominantly black communities in Los Angeles. So this fact alone suggests that white police officers had little contact with blacks within the Watts community.
Overcrowding – too many people confined to too small an area.
Watts is not an incorporated city but rather the name of a place that defines an area of land in Los Angeles that has a radius of about 2.3 square miles. Within this geographic area in 1965 resides about 32,000 people, and about 90% of those are black (blacks became a majority in Watts in the mid-1940s mainly through migration from the South). The population density of Watts then would be about 14,000 per square mile. Though this may seem high, however, when compare to the population density of Manhattan (NYC), a mostly white community in New York City in 1965, its population density was in excess of 69,000 per square mile. Comparing the two then does make Watts’ population density seem rather minuscule. Further, one could very likely come up with numerous examples in every large urban center in America where you could slice out a 2.3 square mile section and produce a population density that was around or greater than Watts’ population density. So using the population density of Watts as a cause for creating black resentment or bitterness just does not ring true.
It should also be noted that it is likely that not one single home or apartment complex within Watts, or even in the vicinity there of , in 1965 had been built by a black male(s); though it must be said that this was typical of every urban center in America with a black population. That is, black males simply did not build their own home, or any other living quarters for that matter, in America’s urban centers. Over the previous one hundred years, black migration to America’s urban centers (black males did not build any American cities), the process followed the same pattern : blacks would move from a rural area (usually the South) to a city environment and occupy the older homes, which were previously vacated by white people and this black encroachment would drive white people out and thereby create black communities). During this process over the previous one hundred years (from 1865 to 1964) as I’ve already pointed out, only three riots erupted in urban America where blacks were the initiators. And in none of those cases was overcrowding mentioned as the catalyst.
Finally, for those who may think that blacks were forced – by white males – to live in dilapidated, substandard and/or slum housing in Watts, nothing could be further from the truth. Almost one-third (over 9000) of blacks were living in rather new federal government provided housing projects that were only about 12 years old. And these housing units were not the imposing tower complexes common in other large urban centers, but were instead designed to be inconspicuous two-story structures (i.e. Watts, with many palm tree-lined streets, was no ghetto).
* If you’re wondering just where the overcrowding issue originated from, I can find only one source ever mentioning overcrowding in Watts : Martin L. King. About a month after the riots, King wrote this (naturally, King being King, he provided no census data) : “…when the population density of Watts became the worst in the nation,…’” (source) As I’ve already pointed out here, this statement is factually incorrect.
High unemployment – black males not getting “equal access to jobs”
Note: The total number of black male registered businesses in the US in 1960 (US Census) was approximately 34, 400. In other words, only .0043 of all adult black males owned their own business in 1960- all are mom & pop operations ( Source: Chronological History of the Negro -pg 523). So , using the above population count for blacks in Watts in 1965, which was about 28,500, doing the simple math then ,and also factoring out females and those black males under 20 years-old, and applying the .0043 percent for black business owners nationwide, that would mean there would be approximately 36 black-owned business in Watts in 1965. Remember, 288 business were report looted and burned in the Watts riots. That means that white people owned almost all of these businesses. It also shows the extent to which white people provided for the black population in Watts. When they left, naturally, so did the economic vitality of the community.
In 1965, unemployment for blacks in Watts is anywhere from 20% to 30%, four to six times the national average. Yes, this is very high. But since black males are from an Arrested culture (2), they will not produce enough occupations for their own male group members, so finding extremely high unemployment among this male group is to be expected – it is their history. However, let us not forget that during the great Depression of the 1930s black males faced unemployment levels in the 50% range in some urban centers. If high unemployment produces riots then there would have been hundreds, perhaps thousands, of examples in America’s history of blacks initiating riots in the Anglo-created urban centers (Norfolk, VA, Washington D.C., & Charlotte NC, 70 to 80% of all Relief went to Negroes). In the 1930s, there was just ONE black-initiated riot: Harlem, 1935.
Additionally, for those who may claim that discrimination in the job market played a role in causing this riot, blacks faced far greater Historical Group Recognition (HGR) behavior from white people prior to the 1960s. Yet, again, there were only three black-initiated riots prior to the 1960s. Nevertheless, blacks were getting jobs all over the country from white males; and particularly in Los Angeles. Let’s look at it this way: In order for there to be black migration to an Anglo-created urban center, blacks had to be convinced that jobs were available for them there. Naturally, since black males are a non-Occupational Ranking male group(3), urban jobs HAD to come from a source other than their own male group. So the history of blacks in Los Angeles – again, an entirely Anglo-created urban center – demonstrates that white people were the main source supplying blacks with plenty of employment opportunities in the city, and particularly during the 40s and early 50s – a fact that only encouraged the ‘Great Migration’ of blacks to continue to target Los Angeles to seek employment. But the fact that there was such a massive influx of blacks into Los Angeles during the 40s and 50s, this development – predictably – created a crushing problem for the white community: they simply could not keep up with the ever growing number of new arrivals and provide them jobs. To illustrate this massive black population movement, again, mainly from the South, let’s look at the following Los Angeles statistics.
–In 1940 the black population is approximately 60,000
–In 1965 the black population is now approximately 350,000
(In 1940 the non-white population of Los Angeles is 6.5%. So accounting for the small Asian and Hispanic populations, it is reasonable to assume that the black population percent stood at around 4% – and this would probably be on the high side. So with a total Los Angeles population of 1.5 million in 1940, that would mean there were about 60,000 blacks living in the city of Los angles in 1940.)
By 1965 it appears that the massive influx of blacks into southern California over the previous 25 years had finally produced what certainly should have been predictable to every white and black witnessing this migration : the point of critical mass with respect to employment absorption into the white community. Therefore, it wasn’t a case of blacks in Los Angeles facing discrimination (i.e. white males pursuing their right – prior to 1964 – to Historical Group Recognition) … more than it was a case that by 1965… too many blacks had come and the job-providing white community simply could not continue to absorb these great numbers. So it was not the fault of white people that black unemployment was high in Los Angeles. Nor was it – of course – the fault of white police officers for the unemployment predicament of the blacks in Los Angeles. Let’s now move to ‘poverty.’
Almost 50% (or more) of blacks lived below the poverty line in Watts in 1965. Yes, this is extremely high. However, it is around the average for the black race nationwide. Since black males should always have high unemployment levels in urban settings – being from an Arrested culture – it stands to reason that there will also be the associated poverty with such high unemployment. And since we’ve already eliminated high unemployment as a factor in creating this riot, and poverty is directly associated with employment, then a high poverty level also must be eliminated as a cause for this riot.
Of course, no black male (or female) was denied the opportunity to go to school in Watts. The major problem seems to be nothing more than it has always been with the black race (particularly males): the difficulty of getting them to actually apply themselves to the task of learning (no solution to this dilemma has yet been found). If there are those who suggest that blacks must be taught by white teachers, that this would make the task of learning easier for them, or perhaps more intellectually rewarding, this kind of reasoning should be rejected for what it is: downright racism. If learning is made more difficult in black schools, this most likely is the result of behavior that is peculiar to blacks themselves. That is, black students are making the school environment difficult and/or impossible for other (most?) black students. This seems to be affirmed by Marquette Frye, the Watts’ black motorist whose arrest led to the Watts riots. He commented on his school life in Watts saying: “When we came to California [from a predominantly white school], we got into an all Negro school … But here [in Fremont High School], I kept getting suspended for fighting.” Marquette Frye dropped out at 16-years old.
So if police brutality wasn’t the cause for the Watts riots, and high population density, high unemployment, a high poverty rate or the present school system also played no part , what did cause the Watts riots?
There is a common thread, a common denominator if you will, in each of the four black-initiated riots since July of 1964: White Police Officers. But in each riot it is clear to any unbiased person that police did not use excessive force in any of these incidences to warrant anger. So black youths are – it appears – using white police officers as an excuse to loot stores and attack white people? This is certainly part of it. But we still have the issue of anger toward white police officers. Anyone watching footage from the Watts riots can see the palpable anger in the black males. But why is it really there? And why is it being directed at white police officers? In fact, in EVERY major city in America (again, blacks created no urban centers), blacks were claiming excessive police violence by the white officers. However, to any logical thinking person this can’t possibly be true. Every major city in America? And all the white police officers are deliberately singling out blacks?! Simply nonsense. My theory? The police were still being recognized as the enforcement arm of the pre Compulsory Inclusionism system. Let’s recall here that on July 2, 1964, the federal government passed the Civil Rights Act. The result of this new law (an integration law unprecedented in human history) had now seemingly legitimized the argument that blacks had a historic “right” to integrate with the white race. However, this right was clearly not there. Nevertheless, the passage of the Civil Rights Act naturally implied to the black man that it (integration rights) was there. And, more importantly for the black man, a right NOT received by his people throughout their entire history in America. So every negative thing a black man could conjure up about being black in America (lack of jobs everywhere he went, high poverty levels, despair and misery in virtually every black community, high dropout rates from high schools, the high crime rates and high incarceration rates and broken families) were now all directly attributed in his mind to the fact he was denied his “right” to integrate into the white man’s (another people’s) society. And whose job was it to enforce the white community’s desire to maintain the color line? The white police officers. This now leads us to the anger issue toward white people that is clearly so prevalent among blacks in Watts, as well as all over America, at this time. As I’ve already point out, the black man believed he was wronged. And he believed it mainly because he was being told it over and over again. And those who were claiming it were usually given instant access to the media, and particularly television. Malcolm X was telling blacks to get their “freedom“, “justice” and “equality…” “by any means necessary.” And how was the black man to achieve his “freedom”, his “justice” and his “equality”? Through integration (integration with the people he’s also inferring are his brutal oppressor?). King was telling the black man that America had “wrote a bad check” to him – implying, of course, that white people owe the black man money. Even President Johnson was telling the black man he was a victim, that he was “hobbled by the chains of slavery”, that, in 1965, he was still “not yet free”. In fact, there was almost a perverse competition going on now among whites and blacks as to whose prose or rhetoric could create the most shocking or the most poignant illustration of black persecution, victimization or oppression (none of which, in reality, actually existed). So finding an angry black man in urban America would hardly be surprising. In fact, it should be expected .
Finally, there is one other component within this riot that deserves recognition for contributing to prolong it: Television. The first night of rioting the black males were engaged in bottle throwing, window breaking, throwing objects at white people’s cars and turning vehicles over and then torching them. By daybreak of the following morning the situation had calmed down. In fact, things had stayed calm until the evening (past 6 pm). However, throughout the day young blacks had become aware that the major networks (ABC, NBC, CBS) had arrived and were now giving them a national audience (they were on TV!). And even more crucial, the media people were refusing to condemn their atrocious behavior. It shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone then to see black males charge back into the streets and renew their feral rampage. And why should the media men care? Wasn’t the riot providing them profitable news footage?
Let’s Sum up here. There are 5 common sense reasons for the 1965 Watts riots: 1) blacks migrated to LA from the South (almost 300,000 in the previous 20 years) and provided for themselves and their people insufficient job opportunities and no housing (i.e. they made themselves dependent on another people); 2) white males provided blacks housing and jobs (incidentally, blacks provided no jobs to whites), however, white males simply could not provide enough housing and jobs. That is, a critical mass level had been reached whereby white people simply could not further provide for black housing and black employment; 3) the Civil Rights Act implied to blacks that they had a historic “right” to integrate, and this denied historic right (by whites) was the source of all their real or imagined ills in Watts (and America); 4) blacks perceived the white police officers as the enforcement arm that had, and still did, maintain the color-line (remember, the black man now believed that his freedom, his dignity and even his very manhood are all achieved through integration with whites — the very people he’s also calling his brutal oppressor); 5) TV networks provoked a continuation by providing a national audience to the hundreds of criminal-minded blacks and failed to condemn the behavior.
As for the actual flashpoint for the Watts riots, there is one and only one action which provoked the 5 days of riots: Marquette Frye bolting toward the black crowd. Had Mr. Frye simply submitted to the arrest … the Watts riots NEVER would have occurred.
* Over the next 4 years, black males would launch over 200 unprovoked riots, targeting specifically white businesses and white people.
Also, very good & unbiased description of what the black males did in Watts is provided in the link below
1. Harlem Riot (1964) flashpoint was a white male police officer shooting and killing a black male. The officer claimed the black kid came at him with a knife. It appears that in the black community at this time, no white police officer is allowed to defend himself. Hate-filled blacks (led by unemployed black males) are ready to respond with violence at any police officer doing his job. The ‘white’ police is NEVER to be believed. And the long history of the black males predatory crime rates, which police officers are forced to deal with on a daily basis, is always to be ignored.
a) Occupational Ranking Male Groups: innate culture allows these male groups a grouping capacity to create industrialized societies – among their group members – based on occupational titles stratifying their male group)
b) non-Occupational Ranking male groups : innate culture does not allow these male groups a grouping capacity to stratify their respective male groups using occupational titles. NOTE: Non-Occupational Ranking male groups and Arrested culture are synonymous.
3. Arrested culture : non-Occupational Ranking male groups